Police Current Affairs - 2020

Police Use of Facial Recognition banned by Amazon

On June 11, 2020, the E-Commerce giant Amazon banned the use of its software “Rekognition” by the police. The software used to quickly compare a picture with the police data bases that holds hundreds of 1000s of photos.

Why the ban?

The facial recognition technology has been criticized over some time. This is mainly because, most of the algorithms of the Rekognition software are more likely to wrongly identify the faces of black people than those of white people.

Recognition

The Amazon Rekognition software was launched in 2016. It was sold and used by a number of US government agencies.

What is the controversy?

The Gender Identification technology of Rekognition software identifies faces as only male and female. There is no category for nonbinary gender. According to MIT researchers, the errors in the face recognition system is more. Though it is reducing year after year, the performance of the software on female faces were less accurate than that of male faces.

Facts Box: Spandan Campaign of Chhattisgarh

The Chhattisgarh Government recently launched Spandan Campaign. The campaign aimed to contain fratricide and suicide involving police personnel.

Highlights

Under the campaign, the superintendents of police associated with the Chhattisgarh Government will start a parade in their districts every Friday. After the event, the grievances of the personnel are to be addressed. Also, the campaign has made medical treatment and counselling of depressed officers mandatory.

The campaign will also make arrangements for yoga classes for the police personnel at all the district head quarters. Cooperation of local yoga teachers have been sought to conduct these classes.

Also, the police officers have been instructed to the redress grievances of police personnel in regular intervals. The superintendents have been instructed to visit police stations regularly and make arrangements for recreational activities.

Significance

Around 50 police personnel in the state including paramilitary forces committed suicide in the state of Chhattisgarh in the last two years. Of these 18 were reported from seven districts that are affected by Maoists.

Also, in December 2019, around 6 ITBP personnel were killed at an incident of fratricide (killing of one’s brother or sister).